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Ethiopia : Parents whose children are stranded in Tigary Universities worry

Ethiopian government should not have abandoned our children in Tigray, say parents 

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Thousands of students from different parts of Ethiopia attend university education in the Tigray region of Ethiopia. When the Ethiopian government withdrew forces from the region on Monday following what the government described as a “unilateral ceasefire,” the students were left behind, and their parents do not know anything about their situation. 

Some parents had to go to Arts TV word with the hope of making the condition of their children in Tigray in the limelight so that they get help from relevant bodies. 

Jibnsa Worku’s daughter is studying at Mekelle University. When he learned about the news of the developments in the Tigray region, he called his daughter whose name is not mentioned. She told him that she locked herself in a dormitory along with six other friends.  “I told her to turn the lights off and pray,” he said. And he has not heard from her since then. 

“I understand that maybe it was beyond government’s power to rescue the students at the time and bring them with soldiers,” Mr. Jibsa added. However, he continued, the government should have tried different means to bring children back. “We sent our children because we had faith in the government under God,” he added. 

Another parent, a mother, said she has two children studying in Mekelle University. Her daughter is studying medicine – residing at Hider Hospital. And her son is doing engineering at the Meles Campus. She got hold of her son right after the news of the withdrawal of Ethiopian Defense Force broke out. When she was talking to him, there was already an explosion, but her son was safe. 

“Government forgot our children when it was withdrawing forces,” she said. 

The parents are now appealing to the government if it is possible to rescue their children from the Tigray region via the International Red Cross. 

The Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Ethiopia, on the other hand, says that it is consulting with stakeholders regarding the situation of students in the Tigray region. And asked for parents to wait patiently. 

Phone and internet service to the region is reportedly disconnected, and there is no other means for the parents ( or their children) to communicate. 

On Tuesday, Amnesty International released a statement expressing concern for the safety of civilians in the Tigray region of Ethiopia after the Ethiopian government forces withdrew following a unilateral ceasefire. 

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